The Universal Credit system is, without a doubt, one of the most convoluted and confusing benefits systems in Europe. Claimants who had spent years getting used to the old benefits system have found moving to Universal Credit more confusing than it ought to be. One of the most challenging elements stems from the changes in Universal Credit payments from month to month. In April 2022, a series of changes were voted on by Members of Parliament (MPs).
The vote seen a pay rise attributed to Universal Credit claimants to help give more support in such challenging, austere times. Universal Credit, along with child benefit and statutory pensions, seen a modest rise in April.
Benefits tend to go up year in a bid to keep pace with inflation, and April seen a 3.1% rise in what claimants will be provided in their costs.
This increase was brought in partly to help claimants deal with the cost of living crisis which is underway. Indeed, with energy prices rising by over 50%, UK households have also been hit by rising prices for day-to-day goods and essentials.
What will Universal Credit claimants be paid in April 2022?
The new payments that have been brought in will see a modest rise in what claimants will be paid. At the time of writing, the new payment rates for Universal Credit in April 2022 include:
- A rise from £257.33 to £265.31 per month for claimants aged 25 and under who are single
- A rise from £323.84 to £334.91 per month for claimants aged 25 and over who are single
- A rise from £403.94 to £416.45 per month for joint claimants both aged 25 or under
- A rise from £509.91 to £525.72 per month for joint claimants who are either or both 25 or over
The Government also announced that those who have a limited ability to work will be provided with a small increase. This has risen from £128.89 to £132.89. Meanwhile, if you have been deemed to have a limited ability to work or provide work-related activity then your additional amount has risen from £343.63 to £354.28 per month.
What about those with children?
Universal Credit also has seen some changes raised for those who have children. The new amounts that have been brought in will include:
- A rise from £282.50 to £290 per month for those with a first child born before April 6th 2017
- A rise from £237.08 to £244.58 per month for those with a child born on or after April 6th 2017 and/or a second/subsequent child
- A rise was also brought on for parents who have a disabled child. The lower rate has risen from £128.89 to £132.89, and the higher rate has risen from £402.41 to £414.88.
Changes to April 2022 Universal Credit work allowance
Lastly, a change was made in April to give those who work a higher work alliance. Universal Credit claimants who have a job and who have one or more dependents, or have a limited capacity to work, can earn £573 now as opposed to £557.
These changes, it is hoped, will help to try and balance out the increasing rate to the cost of living.